Alarm companies are discovering that the value of community service programs extends far beyond help

It is better to give than it is to receive.

Wise, familiar words. But how many of us actually put those words into practice? How many of us are guilty of giving them mere lip service? How many of us too often take refuge in the comforting rationalization, “I just don’t have the time?” Too many, for the most part.

Fortunately, many companies and individuals within the security industry are bucking that trend via community service programs, setting a noble example for others to follow. And why not, aside from emergency services, who looks out for the public’s welfare more than security companies?

Thus, such programs are a natural extension of alarm companies’ mission of protecting and helping people. As a bonus, getting involved is a surefire way to boost the general public’s perception of your company, which translates into more business. And, if that’s not enough, the government allows tax deductions for charitable activities.

A tour of alarm dealers, manufacturers and associations reveals the scores of community service programs—ranging from local grassroots efforts to full-blown national campaigns—that are being put into action. Some of the many worthy causes include underprivileged children, battered women, the physically challenged, the disease-afflicted, the homeless, the chemically dependent, the elderly and victims of hate crimes.

While it’s true that security professionals are making a difference, there’s always room for improvement. For every organization expending time and energy to help the less fortunate, there are several others that are not doing their part. As with most undertakings, the hardest part is getting started.

The best plan is to select a cause you are passionate about or feel an affinity for. Then, coordinate with the appropriate organization, determine your level of involvement and carefully allocate your time and resources. Additionally, get as many people involved as possible, both inside and outside of your organization. Devising a fun method of raising funds, such as a golf tournament, may be helpful. Finally, make sure your efforts are well publicized. 

Choose a Cause That Hits Close to Home

There is no shortage of needy people and worthy causes. Nobody could possibly address all, or even most, of them. Therefore, a sensible approach is to select one or more that you can personally relate to on some level. Consider choosing a cause that has affected you, an associate, a family member or friend.

Charitable Acts Come in Many Flavors

Once you’ve selected your charitable cause, you must determine the level and nature of your contribution. Typically, you can devote time, money or both, as well as services and/or facilities.

All Parties Prosper From Humanitarian Pursuits

All the good intentions and efforts in the world ultimately mean little if the desired results are not being achieved. It’s important to establish goals for your community service program, periodically evaluate its success and make adjustments accordingly.

More Companies Need to Join in to Help Needy

The rewards inherent in participating in a community service program are usually persuasive enough to keep companies and individuals committed. However, what are the prospects of spurring more security professionals to do their share?

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